By Carol McCracken (Post # 2,591)
Passengers aboard the “Balmoral,” an English cruise ship, were infected with norovirus, they told this blogger this afternoon. One such passenger said that 200 passengers were infected. (Actually there were 252 passengers taken sick according to a report from the CDC found on-line.) The ship arrived in Portland Harbor early this morning and was scheduled to leave this afternoon at 4:00 pm. It is the first ship to arrive in Portland for the 2016 cruise season. Figurehead Mayor Strimling
was scheduled to greet passengers as they embarked the ship early this morning at 7:30 pm. Whether or not the Figurehead knew of the outbreak is unknown.
Passengers told one business owner on Exchange Street in the Old Port early this morning that people were quarantined in their cabins, but that didn’t keep the gastroentestial illness from spreading to other passengers and crew members. Another passenger said that even the Captain was sick for 2 – 3 days. They did not see him during the duration of his illness. Passengers could not go ashore in Bermuda – one of the stops on the cruise. According to a report on a Boston TV station this evening – NECN – the ship stopped in Baltimore, Maryland to be sanitized before coming up to Portland.
Employees of the Portland Ocean Terminal, 40 Commercial Street, denied there had been any such outbreak on board the Balmoral and were “testy” with this blogger about it. (See above right photo.)
The City has been silent on what it knew about the outbreak on the ship, when the city knew it and if it took any precautions to protect the public.
The cruise began in Southhampton on April 16. The ship was turned away from Bermuda because of the outbreak. It is expected to leave Portland for Canada and another two weeks on board.
editor’s note: Carol McCracken is so delighted to say that she was informed early last week that her right, broken leg has healed. She is gradually “out-and-about” with the use of a cane – looking forward to absorbing lots of sunshine in the coming days! The break occurred twelve weeks ago today in the kitchen of her Munjoy Hll apartment. It’s time!